Cast and Crew: Ernest Tidyman (Screenplay); Fernando Rey, Tony Lo Bianco, Alan Weeks, Frank Adonis
What It’s About: Eccentric cops Jimmy “Popeye” Doyle (Gene Hackman) and Buddy Russo (Roy Scheider) attempt to work their way up a drug smuggling operation taking heroin into New York via Marseille.
Why Watch it Today?: Today is the UN’s International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking. Although The French Connection is probably most famed for its harrowing chase sequence through crowded New York streets that director William Friedkin shot guerrilla style, it is an excellent crime drama, and set the template for many drug investigation movies to come.
Where to Get It: Your local library; Amazon and iTunes; Netflix (DVD)
Other Choices: Cleopatra Jones, Coffy, Foxy Brown, Quiet Cool, Avenging Disco Godfather….